Friday, July 13, 2018



MLK Scholars program will provide 650 Boston Youth with summer employment opportunities at 65 nonprofits; expanded EVERFI financial literacy tools to benefit other City summer jobs program participants

BOSTON - Friday, July 13, 2018 - Mayor Martin J. Walsh together with corporate, youth and nonprofit leaders today joined John Hancock and Boston University to kick off the 11th year of the MLK Scholars Program. The MLK Scholars Program provides meaningful employment and job readiness opportunities to 650 Boston youth through summer job assignments and workshops. The program is believed to be the largest, most comprehensive corporate summer jobs program of its kind in the country.

As part of the event, Mayor Walsh announced an expanded pilot between John Hancock and EVERFI that allows Boston students from summer job programs outside of the MLK Scholars Program access to the same financial education curriculum. Through this pilot, all students in the Boston Summer Jobs Program will gain the skills to help them manage their finances and achieve their goals. John Hancock has committed to a three year expansion partnership and will work closely with the City of Boston and other summer job providers to give EVERFI access to participants each year.

"I am proud of the work the City of Boston is doing to support our youth through the Summer Jobs Program," said Mayor Walsh. "By providing a student with a job we are doing more than giving them a paycheck, we are matching our youth to meaningful employment opportunities that will equip them with the tools and skills needed for long lasting future success."

To ensure every youth receives the support they need to succeed now and in the future, the Walsh Administration, through its partnerships with Bank of America, Mass Mentoring Partnership, and Bunker Hill Community College will provide youth additional resources and training to enhance their experience in the Mayor's Summer Youth Jobs Program.

  • With Bank of America, the City will offer the One Love program, which will focus on building healthy peer relationships and domestic violence awareness;
  • With Mass Mentoring Partnership, the City will provide supervisor training focused on empowering youth-adult relationships;
  • With Bunker Hill Community College, the City will make available a Learn and Earn free three-credit course that will connect students to other paid BHCC corporate, not-for-profit and small business partners.

Additionally, through a partnership with Commonwealth Corporation, youth that self-identify as homeless, being in foster care, court or gang involved, DYS-committed or having experienced juvenile arrest or probation, experiencing poor academic performance, a child of a single parent, having a disability or special needs, lack of fluency in English or being a foreign immigrant, or  being a teen parent will be able to participate in the Signal Success Program, a 15 hour career and skill development to set up youth for success during and after the completion of the Mayor's Summer Youth Jobs Program.

"We are thrilled to be partnering with John Hancock on expanding access to EVERFI tools. It is a true melding of missions, bringing together the necessary passion, resources, and networks to drive our joint mission to build financial capability forward," said EVERFI Co-Founder and President, Ray Martinez. "John Hancock has taken the long-view, and their three-year commitment underscores the impact the MLK Scholars program, and others like it, will have in improving financial access in the communities they serve."

"Meaningful work experience builds long-term, positive financial behaviors, skills, and confidence," said John Hancock President and CEO, Marianne Harrison. "Economic empowerment and financial knowledge is critical for young people, and, for too many, these aren't accessible. A primary goal of the MLK Scholars Program is to level the playing field, because we are all strengthened when young people have access to career readiness opportunities."

In collaboration with the City of Boston, Boston University, Partners HealthCare, and The Boston Globe, MLK Scholars employs youth for approximately 20-25 hours a week in 65 Boston not-for-profit organizations. John Hancock provides youth salaries to all participants, exposing them to community-based work with substantive economic support.

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